There's A Racial Gap In Retirement
There are many ways that African Americans are still disadvantaged in our country, but few of them are as glaring as the disparity we see in retirement savings.
According to a recent report from the Economic Policy Institute, white workers have almost five times as much wealth in retirement accounts as black workers. And, that disparity has grown substantially since 1980. That's when many Americans lost the protection of an employer-based defined-benefit retirement plan in exchange for a self-funded, risky 401(k).
Thanks to hiring discrimination and other wage disparities, in 1989, white families already averaged about $35,000 more in retirement savings than black families. With the switch to 401(k) retirement accounts, that difference had grown to almost $100,000 by 2013.
And, the percentage of African Americans who even get the chance to contribute to a retirement account is actually declining. In 1983, 52% of black Americans had an employer-based pension plan, but by 2014, only 47% of black workers have a retirement plan of any kind at work.
No American should be forced into poverty just to retire, and it's time close the racial gap in retirement plans.